Chief of Staff
COL Paul Mele
Colonel Mele was commissioned as an Aviation Officer through the ROTC program at The Virginia Military Institute in 1989. Early assignments included service as an Attack Platoon Leader and Operations Officer in the 10th Mountain Division, a 1-6 Cavalry Troop Commander in Korea, the aide-de-camp for the CG of the U.S. Army Aviation Center of Excellence, and as an Attack Trainer at The National Training Center. Recent service includes S3 (Operations) in the Aviation and Missile Command (AMCOM), the J5 (Plans) with the Joint Special Operations Command Air Component, Commander 1-1 Attack Reconnaissance Battalion (1 ID), G3 (Operations) for the U.S. Army Special Operations Aviation Command, and Commander 16th Combat Aviation Brigade (7 ID).
Colonel Mele is a graduate of The Virginia Military Institute and Virginia Tech where he earned a bachelor’s and master’s degree in mechanical engineering respectively. He also has masters’ degrees in national security and strategic studies from The Naval War College and The Army War College.
His awards are representative of his years of service and experiences. He’s also earned the Ranger Tab, Parachutist Badge, and Master Aviator Badge.